Ag. Society to donate to Brussels Arena - Feb. 1, 2018
BY SHAWN LOUGHLIN
The Brussels Agricultural Society is in a position to donate $2,000 to the Brussels, Morris and Grey Community Centre for capital improvements thanks to its involvement with the International Plowing Match (IPM) last September.
At the society’s annual meeting Friday night at the community centre, Outgoing President Matt Cardiff said that since the society was technically a committee of the IPM, it has been given $2,000 from the IPM to donate to a charity of its choice.
Cardiff also said that the society is in a unique position, similar to that of Huron County 4-H, in that while the society was an IPM committee, it is also a charity itself.
Monique Baan, who is a member of both Huron County 4-H and the Agricultural Society, but who has also been involved with the IPM, said that if the organization wanted to donate the money to itself, that would be acceptable.
However, this flew in the face of a discussion that took place earlier in the meeting where member Don Chesher said he was concerned with just how much money the society had in its accounts.
Secretary/Treasurer Brian Schlosser, in a presentation earlier in the evening, detailed the society’s accounts, which totalled nearly $32,000. He told the members that typically the society only has about $18,000 or $19,000 in its accounts at any given time and that approximately $9,000 is needed to host the coming fair.
Chesher said that the society shouldn’t have so much money and that it should be put to use in the community or to better the fair. Schlosser agreed, saying that the society was in a unique situation thanks to its successful IPM fundraising.
Schlosser said that in the year leading up to hosting the fair at the IPM, the society hosted several successful fundraisers, raising approximately $15,000. At the time, he said, no one really knew how much money the society would need to move the fair to Walton for the IPM.
However, once the 2017 fair arrived, Schlosser said the IPM executive was very generous and paid for much of the fair’s expenses, meaning that the society didn’t have to spend nearly any of its money at all.
He did say, however, that with the planned improvements to its structures at the fair grounds and other ongoing community campaigns in Brussels that the society wouldn’t have trouble spending the money in the coming months.
As for the IPM funds, members suggested several charities, but Baan said that many of them had already been identified as recipients by other committees. While she said that didn’t mean that the society couldn’t donate its money there, the IPM executive had been hoping to spread the money out to various Huron County causes, rather than focusing on one or two.
While the Brussels Lions and Optimists, Huron Hospice and North Huron Food Share were all mentioned, as was donating the money back into the Agricultural Society for its structural improvements, members decided to donate it to the Brussels, Morris and Grey Recreation Board for capital improvements to the community centre, which has been home to the fair for decades.